autumn days

Friday, August 12, 2016

Reflections at Day Three

A letter written to a friend on day three (June 11, 2016) of my partner's health issues helped me sift through plans, feelings, and goals.

Dearest Momh,

I've found a nanny to work various evenings when we need someone. I've cancelled our yard sale and am donating clothes and supplies to those who can use them.  I'll attend group counseling sessions with my children in August.  We're talking of how to arrange beds so if the kids get sick they won't give it to their daddy.  I'm currently looking forward to the routine of public school.

I feel a disconnect between my partner and I, as there's so much pressure on him to make the right medical choices, to hand off the family business gracefully and cleanly to his brother, to finish putting the new (dream) house together, to then sell the new house, to teach me to do everything he's always done: errands, finances, groceries, long term planning, home maintenance, etc.  He is too focused on the challenges and solutions to focus  on our connection.  Everyone wants to be with him now, though he wants to be productive.  He wants to provide for our futures and make his functional time productive.  He told me the pressures on him are so different than for someone with cancer at age 60 or 70, when their kids are grown.  It's like he's trying to do a lifetime of work to provide on a very short time.

He looks up statistics and stories and knows the reality of long-term illness we are facing.  It's going to be very ugly.  It's hard to be joyful and light for our children when there is such depth of sadness here.  We will get through it intact, though this is intense.  I feel he wants me to be less emotional and I want him to touch me, not just with the back of his hand as he tackles more tasks.  I feel he expects more from me, but I don't know what.  It's likely he's simply at a loss.  I'll ask him again how I may support him (meals, children, good attitude).  This is overwhelming.  I feel sad with the loss of our connection and of our lives together, the plans we'd made, hoped for, invested in.

Treatments are very complicated and confusing, though his cousin the oncologist will call the local oncologist to discuss treatments and clarify motives and get questions answered.  Then he'll start chemo in a couple days.  He says this first round will be the easiest as each attempt is harder on the body and less successful.  He may need a feeding tube eventually to get any nourishment into his body.  Plan for the worst, hold faith and determination to get to the best.  

I'm looking forward to a professional photo session near our home Sunday.  

I'm at a low point, and know I will bounce and float and soar.  The ebb and flow feel more dramatic right now.
The up and down are to be expected.  In my lighter days, still full of emotions and tears, the ascension is awesome.  There is great love, support, and a village to step in for whatever I ask.  I've already asked for help with carpooling to camps this week so my partner can focus on making the most of his time.  He plans to begin chemo in the next couple days and to continue working.

My task is to focus upon the silver lining, the bright spots, the love from those who support and help us, flowers and the bounty of Mother Earth, the laughter of my children, bringing that to my partner, speaking from my heart with respect and gentleness.

Your friendship is such a gift.  Such big blessings.  May you know deep love and abundance and grace too.


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